Board/Minutes/2021-02-S2S/Reality-based assessment of risks and opportunities of collaboration of work with other OSM actors

From OpenStreetMap Foundation

Reality-based assessment of risks and opportunities of collaboration of work with other OSM actors (HOT, companies, local chapters)

Notes by participants. Might be enriched. Some points were not included, after request.

This session took place in parallel with "Encouraging more volunteers to join other working groups". A summary was provided to the other group.



Board members

  • Mikel Maron
  • Rory McCann
  • Tobias Knerr

The rest of the board members participated in the parallel session.


Collaborative notes

  • Rory is working with HOT about trademark agreement, still in motion. OSMF Licensing Working Group (LWG) strongly recommends asking outside legal counsel on the trademark grant (née MoU).
  • Important because greatly increasing number of edits in OSM ecosystem.
  • Mikel talks about opportunities for working with HOT to grow OSM communities.


  • Goals of HOT and OSMF -- helps OSM mission, and pulls OSM in other directions where there is divergence.
    • Values of OSM.
      • OSMF doesn't bootstrap communities.
      • OSM as a whole are "grassroots" vs "astroturf".
      • decentralization (OSM traditional) vs centralization (HOT).
  • Speed of completion vs quality.
    • Some organisations want to get data quicker, whereas traditionally many in OSM would rather wait (even many years) for higher quality.
    • Paid mappers need to do things on a timeline.
    • HOT needs to respond to a disaster.
    • Imports and AI mapping.
  • Metrics and goals.
    • Some groups have simple metrics, and will be optimize their actions towards that, whereas many OSMers would have different metrics (e.g. 'how many new buildings were added' vs 'how many good quality buildings were added').
    • # of buildings, # mappers (even 1 edit) -- Optimize to that metric rather than quality and sustainability.
  • Working in the open.
    • OSM(F) has a tradition & culture of working in the open. Many corporations don't.
    • Companies are starting to participate more in community dialogue, more of that please.
    • Since OSM is so large, it's possible that OSMers are unaware when this happens.


  • Core support
  • Greater understanding

No decisions or action items.